LIGHT FROM DISTANT ASTERISKS TOWARDS A DESCRIPTION OF THE INDO-EUROPEAN RELIGIOUS HERITAGE

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Abstract

An attempt is made to summarize and synthesize new and old evidence regarding the religious heritage among peoples speaking Indo-European languages in pre-Christian and pre-Islamic Eurasia. Initial stress is put on the methodological, theoretical and ideological problems of such an undertaking. The rest of the paper discusses how the transmission of heritage was conceptualized (with examples from Vedic and Greek literature), to what extent we are able to discern the outlines of an Indo-European pantheon, the possibility of tracing the realizations of hereditary, mythical motifs in the oldest Indo-European literatures, and the prospects for a comparative Indo-European ritualistics.

Numen

International Review for the History of Religions

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